The Bulls website has some downloads about spring training here. One of the those downloads is the Rays spring training roster and some old friends of ours are on the list. For now, I’ll just mention the position players I think could show up in Durham this year, since it makes my head hurt to think about the combinations and permutations of the pitching situation.
We saw Michel Hernandez and Matt Spring last year. A good, solid, experienced catcher is absolutely crucial to the Bulls and I have no doubt that the Rays understand that. Hernandez fills that bill. I suspect Matt Spring is someone that the Rays are looking to bring up in a year or so. And there’s a big name prospect somewhere down the in the chain who’s name I don’t remember at the moment.
Reid Brignac leads the list. It really hurt the Bulls last year when he went on the disabled list (if for no other reason than it exposed Guzman’s lack of range at 3rd base). Seems to me a sure thing that he’ll be with us for further development unless someone in Tampa gets hurt.
Can’t say how pleased I am to see Chris Richard on the list. Really hope that he’s back on our team this year.
Elliot Johnson we all know well. Seems a good chance we’ll see him back here.
Chris Nowak didn’t exactly shine at the end of last year. We’ll see. He surely did well at Montgomery.
Sure do have mixed feelings about Fernando Perez. He’s the most exciting player we’ve had in Durham in a long while, even as he struggled with the Rays-imposed diktat that he become a switch-hitter. In the abstract, sure seems he’d be better off here in Durham rather than working as a speed specialist in Tampa, because he could become a real all-tool player. Besides, I’d like to see him a few more times.
And Jon Weber’s there. Good for him. Undoubtedly the guy who kept the Bulls going in the last of the 2007 season and the middle third of last season. Extraordinary energy level, and seems like nobody gets to second base safely when he’s playing the Blue Monster. Don’t think the Rays have room for him, so expect him back if he’s willing to sign.